Organizing Notes

Bruce Gagnon is coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space. He offers his own reflections on organizing and the state of America's declining empire....

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Location: Brunswick, Maine, United States

I'm back to work for the Global Network. Will continue to help Lisa Savage for US Senate campaign on my free time. Trying to self-isolate as much as possible. Best wishes and good luck to you all.

Monday, November 09, 2009

MEETING TO DEVELOP GRASSROOTS ANTI-WAR EFFORT


We are going to have a statewide anti-war strategy meeting in Bath on Saturday, November 21 at 1:00 pm. The meeting will be held at the Addams-Melman House (212 Centre St). All are invited.

The meeting will be a chance for us to put our heads together in order to create a coordinated plan in Maine to not only get our members of the House of Representatives to vote against the proposed $50 billion more for war in Afghanistan (the Pentagon is now spending $5 billion a month there) but to get them to recognize the need for them to show more leadership in this effort.

Some ideas for the meeting:

I will suggest we make a statewide flyer on Afghanistan war that asks folks to contact our Congressperson.....print many copies.....have an action day (or weekend) statewide.....where instead of all of us coming to one place for a demo, we stay in our local communities and go door-to-door and drop these leaflets at houses....blanket communities across the state, get lots of people involved, alert the media, have coordinated letters to editor all with same basic message....so instead of us banging on the door of Pingree and Michaud we try to get legions of folks across the state to call their offices from the leaflet and letters and cable TV shows, etc.......

We've got to get beyond our core of local activists, which is solid and dedicated, and reach into our communities and surface new energy that will help us take our anti-war work to the next level.

We know that many people are frustrated and are looking for a good outlet for their rage. We've got to go find these people, ask them to do some simple things like contact our members of Congress, and then hopefully they will be ready to take further steps.

People understand that the wars in Iraq-Afghanistan-Pakistan are killing our economy here at home. They see the cuts in education, social services, and other key areas such as infrastructure. Now we've got to get them to do something.

If we can get the House of Representatives to cut war funding in a serious challenge to the Pentagon and the Obama administration then we are going to really get somewhere. In order to do this though it has to become a major organizing focus of the peace movement in Maine and all over the country.

This real grassroots strategy will be hard work. But it will bear much fruit if we are willing to put the effort into it.

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